NEW YORK (AP) — Nektar Therapeutics said Tuesday that U.S. regulators approved its drug Movantik, a once-per-day treatment for constipation caused by opioid painkillers.
Movantik, or naloxegol, is approved for adults who have chronic pain that is not caused by cancer. British drugmaker AstraZeneca PLC will market the drug, and it has also filed for regulatory approval in the European Union and Canada.
Constipation is a common side effect of the painkillers, which include morphine, Oxycontin and Vicodin.
The San Francisco company said Movantik will be available to patients in the first half of 2015. AstraZeneca will conduct a study to evaluate the drug’s cardiovascular side effects.
Shares of Nektar Therapeutics rose 34 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $13.87 in afternoon trading. AstraZeneca stock fell 9 cents to $73.69.